Dwight Howard believes Rockets can win championship. This year.

Associated Press

People in the comments on this post, and on Twitter, are going to mock Dwight Howard for this sentiment. It’s inevitable. Because we all understand that the Rockets are not going to win a title this season.

But here’s the important thing: You want Howard to believe it. If he enters the first round of the playoffs — likely against San Antonio or Golden State — and said what we’re all thinking, they might win one game, he’d get thrashed online for that. As he should. We expect athletes to be confident and even brash, that confidence is part of their success. Howard has to believe it, or he’s just coasting around the floor during games collecting a check.

Meaning yes, Dwight Howard believes the Rockets can win a title this season, he told Sam Amick of the USA Today.

“Regardless of how our season is going so far, regardless of the fact that we haven’t played up to our expectations, I really believe that we have a championship caliber team,” Howard said. “Nobody else has to believe it, and that’s fine. The whole world can be against us. But if those 15 guys in the locker room believe that we can win, then we will win. There’s no doubt about it. We had a great season last year, and the reason why we were able to come in the playoffs and do what we did is because we believed.”

He’s right; nobody believed in the Rockets last season. He should have that confidence going it.

I just wouldn’t bet on that outcome if I were you.